Navigating the Ripples: Understanding the Impact of Stress and Trauma on Our Wellbeing
It is time to focus on the connection between wellbeing and our productivity in life. The ripple effect of stress or trauma on our lives can have a profound impact on our productivity, and it is important for each of us to understand it, and know how to work with, and around it.
- The Silent Culprits: Stress and Trauma Stress and trauma often operate behind the scenes, affecting us physically, mentally, and emotionally. This is not necessarily a permanent state, but it flares up on occasion and sometimes not in the way we expect. The key thing to note is that it is that which causes us to revert to behaviours that make us feel comforted and safe. And these behaviours, more often than not, are detrimental to our health, whether they involve eating the wrong foods at the wrong times, reaching for a glass or two, watching too much TV or social media (especially in the evening or at night), or even exercising too much.
- The Impact: These behavioural patterns affect our state of mind, as they impact the way we rest and recover, the way we sleep, all of which further impacts our energy levels, our moods and our resilience. This in turn creates more stress, and so we have a very powerful, vicious, and negative cycle. The real challenge however, is identifying when these stresses come to the fore and are beginning to affect us. If we can identify this happening early on, we can take action before things spiral out of control, and early intervention makes recovery much easier and quicker.
- Mental health Support – Coaching, Counselling or Therapy: Finding someone to talk to about the situation, whether that be a coach, counsellor or a therapist can be crucial. They allow us to offload without judgement and we can voice everything we are carrying around with us. It can sometimes feel scary, and often we assume it will be pointless, because we can’t see how they can change things. And the reality is that they likely can’t make actual changes, but you can. By saying the unsaid, often unconscious, out loud, we are making space to deal with the situation and more often than not, are able to come up with solutions ourselves. Feel free to get in touch with me for a private session, but I can also recommend my own coach (as we all need to continue getting help) who is very well suited to go much deeper and help you deal with some very deep trauma – Hayley Bennett.
- Forgiveness – Be Kind to Yourself: Remember that this happens to everyone at some point. It is normal and not something to make you feel fearful, but simply something that needs to be managed, and this management can be learned, just like we learn to drive a car, or cook, or clean. It requires breaking down into small, manageable steps, which need to be practised regularly and repeatedly.
- Time Out – Room to Breathe: Ensuring you give yourself time out is most important when you feel least able to do so. Engaging in a good book can be a form of self-care and a means of escaping the clutches of stress, just like attending a workshop amongst like-minded people (I strongly recommend Larkswold for a great range in the most wonderful setting), or a walk in beautiful countryside. Any practice that aligns with your interests, offering not just a mental escape but a chance to explore diverse perspectives and insights, is going to be fruitful.
The impact of stress and trauma on our lives is undeniable, but so is our ability to navigate and overcome these challenges. I would encourage you to take a step back, take a deep breath and make time for yourself. One option is to join one of our wellbeing sessions as they always give you the space to step away from your life.
As we continue our journey, let’s remember that understanding and addressing these silent culprits is a crucial step toward a healthier, more fulfilling life.